Opinion

The roadmap beyond IBC2018

The winds of change are becoming stronger in broadcast. If we only felt a gust or two in previous years, it has gathered strength, building towards a gale, with IP, open architecture, cloud, more mature collaboration and SMPTE 2022/2110 becoming the standard at IBC this year.

For the first time, e-sports featured on more than one stand, offering a glimpse into a world not unlike the one we’re familiar with. With very different content and a more demanding viewer, it seemed to hint at the direction we need to take. VR and cognitive services didn’t seem quite as prominent.

VR continues to be a great technology trying to find its niche as the quality and use cases catch up. There were the familiar faces and products of rebranded and consolidated manufacturers, but perhaps this year, more than any other, there was a feeling that a step change in the industry is just around the corner. And that feeling was most evident in Hall 14.

For those of us who frequented Hall 14 in previous years and couldn’t quite put our finger on what exactly its core theme was, this year offered some clarity. This hall had everything we needed to broadcast OTT from the cloud and develop one’s own solutions.

Of course, Google had a stand right at the entrance of Hall 14 and Facebook was tucked deeper inside. As the players in the OTT and the social media ecosystem become a part of mainstream entertainment, it may not do to ignore Hall 14 anymore.

With Amazon, Google, Facebook, Microsoft and even, Netflix making prominent appearances at IBC2018, one wonders if the incumbent vendors and broadcasters feel overshadowed by these household names and internet giants?

These were the questions I came back with from IBC, and some of these may be tackled at the ASBU BroadcastPro Summit and Awards that we host annually in November. In the meantime, for those of you who have innovated in MENA TV, radio, film, OTT and all things entertainment, please participate in the awards nominations at broadcastpromeawards.com